Differentiation of tuberculosis from lymphomas in neck lymph nodes with multidetector-row computed tomography
Abstract:BACKGROUND: Tuberculosis (TB) of the cervical lymph nodes may mimic lymphoma.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate multidetector-row computed tomographic (MDCT) imaging criteria for differentiating between the two diseases.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed the anatomical distribution and CT enhancement patterns of the nodes in 81 patients, 27 (33%) with untreated TB and 54 (67%) with untreated lymphomas involving cervical lymph nodes. Of the patients with lymphomas, 19 (35%) had Hodgkin's disease and 35 (65%) had non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
RESULTS: TB predominantly involved the upper cervical nodes. The supraclavicula fossa nodes on MDCT were involved more often in Hodgkin's disease (n = 15, 79%) and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (n = 25, 71%) than in TB (n = 3, 11%). Tuberculous lymphadenopathy commonly showed peripheral enhancement, frequently with a multilocular appearance. Peripheral enhancement was significantly more frequent in TB (n = 19, 70%) than in Hodgkin's disease (n = 1, 5%) and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (n = 1, 3%), but homogeneous enhancement was less common in the TB group.
CONCLUSION: Our findings indicate that a specific enhancement pattern of lymphadenopathy seen on MDCT was useful in differentiating between untreated TB and lymphomas of the cervical lymph nodes.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Department of Radiology, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China
Publication date: 2012-12-01
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